There are a mounting number of reasons to head up Northgate Street, towards the Fountains roundabout; fabulous Thai food at 9 elephants, playing with dinosaurs at Virtual Reality Experience, and now getting your craft on at 2nd Floor. Of course, that’s doing them a disservice, 2nd Floor is more than just an after-hours creative space, it’s a shop selling the wares of talented local makers, everything from prints and jewellery to hoodies and bags – and let’s not forget the coffee and cake.
But for now, we’re going to zoom in on one of their recent evening offerings – Macramé Workshop with Debi from Live Cheshire. For £8 we were invited to rock up without needing to book in advance, and spoil ourselves with prosecco and sweet treats. All materials were provided and the place was packed – 29 people showed up eager to give it a try.
We packed out the colourful space on stools, chairs, sofas and cross-legged on the floor and set to work measuring out lengths of string and vibrant wool. Debi patently taught us the initially complex (to me, at any rate) plaiting structure which would create the majority of our macrame plant hangers. Once we got the hang of it, we were flying; chatting amongst ourselves, marvelling at what we were slowly creating.
It instilled the same feeling as sitting on the reading carpet at School as a child, plaiting one another’s hair to the melodic backdrop of a fairytale. Debi kept checking in on our handiwork, offering advice, adjusting and applauding efforts. I took a well-earned break mid-way through and dedicated myself to a large chunk of Bakewell cake, whilst everyone else cracked on (hence being a late finisher, but I don’t regret it one bit).
For the absolute bargain of £8 we walked away with intricate constructions in which to slot our aloe veras and succulents and for some of us (me) a full stomach too. My husband marvelled at what I’d managed to make over three hours – even though it was by far the skinny runt in the group, it was still a decent effort – turns out my attention span is somewhat lacking (but I should know this from my appalling driving). It will take pride of place in my kitchen – I’ve already sourced a plant from The Violet Palm. No idea what plant, but they’ve assured me it’s tricky to kill.
For me, the event was more about a lovely, chilled out evening, challenging my brain with something new, chatting to strangers and I’m chuffed that there’s more in the pipeline. They’re running another macramé workshop on 20th September, Jewellery Making event on 29th September, full details here and a knitting 1o1 gathering on 6th September. Get crafty Chester.